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Recent Entries to this Blog new project
Posted: 13 Jan 2009
My new Toy
Posted: 20 Nov 2008
Baking days
Posted: 12 Oct 2008
searching for a recipe
Posted: 26 Aug 2008
crazy weather
Posted: 11 Aug 2008

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playtime8978's Blog

ramblings of an amateur

new project

Category: general garden | Posted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:18 pm

We lost my mother in law last january and my father in law has been left in the house by himself they have a large back garden and a coldframe, my mother in law was a keen gardener and always kept her garden looking immaculate but since she died the garden has been left except from the lawn being mowed, after speaking to my husband and my father in law my husband and I are going to take on responsibility for the garden and get it back to looking good and use the greenhouse for tomatoes, peppers and maybe courgettes/zucchini, I am really looking forward to the milder weather to start getting stuck into to the garden and making it come alive again it needs a lot of weeding and cutting back of plants but we will get there I am sure, I have already got myself excited about starting seeds indoors and transferring to the garden or coldframe. Watch this space for future developments !!

Last edited: Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:19 pm

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My new Toy

Category: cooking | Posted: Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:33 am

I dropped my food processor some time ago as I had it on my kitchen Island and caught the wire which was plugged in by the microwave on the side and knocked into onto the floor. I broke the bit on the lid that clicks into the safety switch and the piece would not glue back on, so my husband managed to override the safety switch for me so that I could use it still but was warned to be very careful. I had been wanting a foodprocessor and mixer with a dough hook as I have trouble kneading bread With my problems but I love homemade bread soooo off I went a looking to see what I could find and for what price thinking I would wait till christmas and see if i could get it off my husband and father in law. We had some vouchers left from Argos and some from Debenhams from our wedding last year as we hadnt wanted to just spend them on anything and waste them, So when I found a 3 in one Kenwood mixer/food processor/ blender in Argos with £20 off I showed my husband and we checked the Argos vouchers and had more than we first thought, so he said well lets get it now while they have it! so i reserved it online for collection at a local store and went and got it. We got it home and excitedly started to get it out of the box and found that the plastic protective lid on the mixer bowl with the arm was broken, oh my! we tried calling the store to tell thema and ask about a swap but we could not get through so we reserved one online again as was the only one left in the stores locally and went yesterday to collect it. This one is perfect and as both of us are feeling not so well ( I have a chest infection and hubby has some sort of bug he is going to the dr today) we didnt want much to eat so I thought I would have a go at making some bread and could cook a chicken to have with it, so I got to it and as the bread dough was kneading I wasnt totally convinced it was doing a good job of it but when I left it to rise it rose beautifully and it cooked well It was the nicest bread I have made in a long time so no more bricks of bread which I have managed to produce before. I am looking forward to making many things in my new toy it is a Kenwood Prospero and seems perfect for what I want it for.

Last edited: Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:35 am

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Baking days

Category: cooking | Posted: Sun Oct 12, 2008 9:29 am

I have spent the last two days baking Biscotti, I made some on friday for the first time and hubby loved them so I made some to take to my Parents and hubby asked if he could have some too so I made another batch for home, they are so easy to make and I love baking, I have bought some stork so can get on with baking some cakes this coming week i will start on monday if this cold goes woke up this monring full of it which isnt good, hopefully it will only do what it did last tuesday and last 24 hours ( i overdosed myself with vitamins and echinacea!) or maybe it is time I dealt with a proper cold again. I made a roast beef dinner on monday with all the trimmings and found the best yet recipe for yorkshire puddings, I use two eggs cracked into a glass then fill another glass ( same glass type) with flour then another with milk beat them all together and cook at gas mark 6-7 for 10 minutes they were great and I have had little success with them before so I was pleased just my fat wasnt quite hot enough so they didnt crisp up as much as id have liked, I made the jam which I spoke about it in the forum, that is lovely so will be making more when I can get more fruit. I hope everyone is well and the winter bugs arent getting to you as well.

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searching for a recipe

Category: tomatoes | Posted: Tue Aug 26, 2008 11:15 pm

I have decided that with my 'bitter' tomatoes I am going to try and make chutney, all I know is I want a recipe that has apple in it as my brother made some last year and it was delicious. He found the recipe online but has not got it now, I dont know if I would have to skin all the tomatoes which would be fun as they are mainly cherry toms I have grown or if I can use them with the skins. Also the recipes I looked at called for pickling spice which neither my mum or I have seen anywhere, if anyone has any recipes that are good please please let me know I would be so grateful, I might even put a 'wanted' in the recipe section. The tomatoes are ripening slowly and im guessing if I refridgerate them they will last until i have enough to make a batch of the chutney even if I have to make a small batch ill try. My husband is keen on me trying it so he can have homemade lamb burgers with homemade relish, personally I like it with a good crumbly Lancashire cheese.I think I am going to enjoy having a go at making this

This blog entry has been viewed 438 times

crazy weather

Category: general garden | Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 11:58 am

well the weather has been crazy for july and august so far we had a few days of hot weather then it went back to being rainy and cool we have had a lot of wind and my tomato plants poor things have been battered but they seem to be holding their own we have plentiful fruits just nothing showing a hint of ripening which is a shame i am getting impatient !! the strangest thing was we put some hyacinth bulbs outside we got as a gift in january and flowered inside when they were done lazily the pot was left outside to be dealt with my husband was pottering in the garden yesterday and found them and they have shooted and are well on their way the shoots ae about n inch and a half above the soil level poor things obviously think it is spring we have brought them inside and will keep an eye on them even the most neglected things seem to want to grow !! we also have a sunflower that my husband planted into the ground and it has not 1 not 5 but 10 flower heads forming on it i will have to get pictures and post them on here but it has been raining and windy so as yet havent got any shots of it i hope everyone elses garden is a little more normal and i am now concerned about this pot of potatoes we are growing that they will rot with all the rain

Last edited: Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:00 pm

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general garden musings

Category: general garden | Posted: Wed Jul 30, 2008 11:25 pm

here are some pictures of my little bits of pots in the garden it isnt all of them but these are the ones i have so far

this is our sunflower these are great we have a number of them grown from bird seed of my moms this is the only one thats started top open out

this is the maigold anniversary gift off my mom the flowers are soon dropping because of the heat of the last few days but they have been wonderful and the bees and insects love them

these are two pots of flowers by the kitchen door on on the right with the maigold rose in and the smaller one has geranium fuscia and busy lizzies in
they wilt so fast and need plenty of water ive found

this is another pot by the wall surrounded by a potted sycamore that leaves are burnt the fuscia is in its second year and looked like a bunch of dead sticks then all of a sudden it came to life and this is the result the geranium and busy lizzies are suffocated

this is my medium to small sized tomato plant it isnt looking healthy i am going to feed her and see if she picks up the fruit are swelling now but the leaves look very unhappy
My husband has promised me for next year he will build me a raised vegetable plot along the back wall as it gets the most sun i have a very small back garden and is in need of attention i will pester him and try get this veg garden built so i can plant some lovely things for next year im thinking carrots and parsnips and lettuces and beetroot maybe radishes and leeks i am so new to all this i will have to do some searching find out what space and conditions things need id also like to grow tomatos again in pots and maybe if possible sweet peas in pots. we also plan on potatoes in sacks and if i possibly could id like blueberry bush and raspberry canes my research must begin soon

This blog entry has been viewed 419 times

photos of my tomatos

Category: tomatoes | Posted: Sun Jul 27, 2008 6:52 pm

this is the microtom plant which is covered in little fruits currently on the outside of the kitchen window sill

this is the largest plant i have but cant decide what size the tomatoes will be they are very green

this is the third plant with what look small beef tomatos but again cant decide what size they will develop to

this is the top of the larger plant and as you see it is still flowering so will be quite some time before the tomatoes develop
we have ahd a cold wet summer untill last few days when it has brightened up and become quite hot for here i am an impatient soul and want to try my firstt attempt at growing my own tomatoes

Last edited: Sun Jul 27, 2008 6:53 pm

This blog entry has been viewed 506 times

welcome to my first GardenStew blog

Category: tomatoes | Posted: Fri Jul 25, 2008 8:09 pm

oh my what a wash out summer for us has been so far I am an amateur gardener with big ideas and next to no garden lol sooooo we bought a mini greenhouse ( literally shelves with a cover and my mom donated 3 tomato plants , a microtom which is quite wonderfully covered in little green fruits and two taller varieties that i cannot decide are cherry tomatoes or just an average sized tomato under developed so far. I have had them out in the open as our cover tore in a freak windy couple of days and have yet to replace now to my annnoyance as yet we have not even a sign of any of the fruits ripening. The microtom is covered in small fruits but no sign of ripening and the other 2 plants my hubby is convinced are large varieties that are not yet up to full size. The plants went in a little late around the beginging of may i think and have grown tall and bushy my puzzle is do i get them under cover either indoors or under the plastic cover or do i just have to have a little more patience, my mum has them in a plastic covered greenhouse and she also has had none ripening but the fruits look larger yet fewer of them what a quandry if i can get photos of them i will post

This blog entry has been viewed 396 times

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